Cover photo for John F. Bridges's Obituary
John F. Bridges Profile Photo
1933 John 2012

John F. Bridges

February 11, 1933 — August 16, 2012

John F. Bridges, 79, passed away on August 16, after a brief battle with cancer. He was born in Concord, NH to the late former NH Governor and United States Senator H. Styles and Sally Clement Bridges and educated at local schools. As a young boy, he summered in Wolfeboro, and some of his fondest memories were of working at Goodhue and Hawkins Navy Yard, and on the Steamship, The Swallow. He graduated from Adm. Billard Academy in New London, CT, and from Wentworth Institute in Boston, MA. John served in the US Army from 1954-56. He then went to work for Universal Carloading, living in several locations around the country before moving back to NH in 1966. In 1970, he was elected to the NH House of Representatives, and then was elected Executive Councilor from District 4 from 1972-1974. It was during a run for US Congress, that John met his wife, Barbara. John then served as Director of Safety Services, Marine Patrol, and founded Island Real Estate in 1979 which brought him back to his first love, Lake Winnipesaukee. In 1984, John and his family moved to Wolfeboro, where he continued to operate Island Real Estate for over 30 years with his long-time partner, Betty Ann Gagne, and cofounded Bridges’ Hallmark Shop with his wife in Wolfeboro. John served on various state boards over the years including Trustee of the Youth Development Center; Dept. of Environmental Services, Water Coucil; Water Resources; Moorings Appeal Board; Wolfeboro Police Commission for 4 years; and was committee member of the Millfoil Committee. John also enjoyed speaking to various clubs and organizations about the history of the islands of Winnipesaukee, and reminiscing about the early days in Wolfeboro. In the early 1990’s, he was known for his folksy weather reports from his summer home on Barndoor Island. He loved his early morning rowing around the islands and would share his stories with the listeners of WASR in Wolfeboro. John was a devoted and loving husband to his best friend and wife, the former Barbara Grueter, for 39 years. He was a loving father to his daughter, Cynthia, of Wolfeboro, and son, John, of South Portland, Maine; his grandchildren, Leif Hansen of Wolfeboro; Zac Biron, of Weare; and Grace Elizabeth Bridges, of South Portland, Maine; great-grandchildren, Ava and Skye Hansen and Jacob Biron. He also leaves many nieces and nephews and sisters-in-law and brothers-in-law, who he cared for deeply. He was predeceased by two brothers, David and Styles, Jr. He also leaves behind, his most faithful companion, his dog, Roxie, who provided him with so much love and companionship. Calling hours will be held at St. Katharine Drexel Church in Alton, NH on Monday, August 20, from 1 to 4 and 6 to 8. A mass of Christian burial will be held on Tuesday, August 21 at 11 am. . In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the St. Katherine Drexel building fund, Alton, NH, or to the Lakes Region Humane Society, Ossipee, NH
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